On March 5, 2022 an EF-3 tornado ravaged Winterset, Iowa. I didn’t see the tornado, but I believe it was real based upon the evidence. Images of downed trees, snapped power lines, damaged buildings, and a path of debris all testify of the twister’s reality. Those who witnessed the tornado certainly believe that it happened, but so do a large number of people who only see the results left behind.
Jesus’ resurrection is like that devastating twister in that a few people witnessed its reality (John 20:16-20), but many more who didn’t see it believe based upon the evidence. Are you a skeptic unconvinced that Jesus proved Himself the Messiah by rising from the dead unless you have tactile (sight, touch) evidence?
Thomas was a skeptic, refusing to believe in the reality of Christ’s resurrection and His identity as Messiah without personally seeing and touching His wounds (John 20:25). Given the chance to see and touch the risen Christ, Thomas’ doubt turned to devotion as he declared, “My Lord and My God!” (John 20:28)
Thomas’ belief based upon sight and touch was admirable, but Jesus declared that belief based solely upon trust is even more commendable, “Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.” (John 20:29) To believe without sight is not blind faith, but trust based upon compelling evidence such as the historical accuracy of a crucified Jesus laid to rest in what is now an empty tomb; Eyewitness testimony by those who saw the risen Christ—“Cephas, the twelve… more than 500 brethren at one time” (1 Corinthians 15:5-6); Fulfilled prophecy (Psalm 16:8-11; Isaiah 53:3-12; 1 Corinthians 15:4); and unswerving loyalty of disciples who died as martyrs rather than renounce their belief in a risen Savior.
Jesus’ resurrection served as a sign confirming His identity as “Lord and God” (John 20:28) and proved His victory over sin and death (1 Corinthians 15:57). How are those who believe in the reality of the sign and the identity of the Savior without seeing blessed? “…but these (signs) have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.” (John 20:31)
For some, seeing is believing, but Jesus said believing without seeing is a blessing. This Easter, believe that Jesus is the Christ and receive new life. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26)